Glasser - Interiors | Album Review | By Volume

The kid that went down isn't dead; he just can't find his phone. The Hold Steady - Almost Everything
GLASSER-INTERIORS

Glasser

Interiors

Glacial melodies and pristine hooks; Glasser emphatically returns.

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Author: on October 30, 2013
7.0
True Panther Sounds
October 4, 2013

Cameron Mesirow is a beastly entity on record. I don’t mean in a monstrous sense either, though she can be quite sinister; I speak more of her primal approach to music. Her voice is a once-in-a-lifetime gift, a la Natasha Kahn or Björk, with immense range and vocal power. She’s very rarely confined to the vocalist-only-box, frequently slashing her voice into pieces, layering and interweaving between chilly atmospherics that garnish an otherwise scorching, earthy beat. Her debut Ring was at once both organic and mechanical, New Hampshire and 1984 mashed into one beautifully dark piece of home-brewed avant-pop. Though dark in the thematic sense, many of her songs were intrinsically groove-oriented yet always had an air of abrupt introversion – as though we were allowed only to see through a portion of the open door. Interiors is not that record.

This time, Mesirow flings the door open, grabs our wrist and pulls us inside. Within her grasp is a beating heart and a copy of Interiors, a spinning chunk of her own being. I refer to it as such because it is a deeply personal record; in the build-up to its release, Mesirow revealed a lot of its concepts revolved around her move to New York City. Shifting coasts is a thematic current that flows through the backbone of this record. Moving three-thousand miles is no small feat but furthermore to transition from LA to New York City is such a massive cultural and physical exchange it is no surprise that a lot of Interiors’ lyrics revolve around wintry cityscapes and the change of seasons. “When the crossing gets too white then I’ll go home”, she coos on opener “Shape” as its tribal beat and glitchy synths fade out. We’re left with only Mesirow to guide us: “and I look longingly over the beach / there’s an ocean making life beyond my reach / and the vastness is too much for me to stand.” Leaving behind clever metaphors and meta-infused lyricism about one’s spiritual being, Mesirow instead plants us directly into her shoes, allowing us to see these personality traits in action as opposed to simply being theoretical: “oh, well, this is how I am.”

How long until I know you?” Mesirow questions during “Keam Theme’s”, a query I feel most listeners could identify with after first experiencing her debut. Ring was a great record, and to be honest, pound-for-pound, slightly better than Interiors. But I wouldn’t trade that Mesirow for Interior’s manifestation in any equation – while this record isn’t as unabashedly infectious or unique as her debut, she seems unquestionably more comfortable in her role as Glasser. Mesirow isn’t trying to create some façade for us to follow, some preconceived entity that an audience will find charming – she instead is letting her own quirky charisma purvey through her music; an aspect sorely missing from Ring at times. “It’s a modern trouble / metamorphosis” she reflects upon with “Exposure” – a fitting song-title indeed, as with the ample exposure Glasser has garnered over the past couple of years, Mesirow has reached a crossroads; one where she decides whether she prefers to build upon a singular aesthetic or instead, grab innovation the reigns, say fuck-all to good sense and try something challenging. In leaving behind her more tribal beats and bedroom aesthetic, in lieu of more futuristic production and an elegant use of negative space, Glasser’s music is maturing into quite a gorgeous butterfly indeed.

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